3. Learning as we go

Readings and exercises for Strategic Skills for Emerging Leaders.

Session outline

Facilitated discussion: responses to the pre-reading (see list below); and reflections on building your professional network

Presentation: leadership journal


Nina A Bowman (2016): Four ways to improve your strategic thinking skills.

Caroline Ceniza-Levine (2019): How to show employers you have transferable skills

Amy Wrzesniewski, Justin M Berg and Jane E Dutton (2010): Managing yourself: turn the job you have into the job you want

Tomas Pueyo (2019): How to become the best in the world at something.

Building your professional network

Harold Jarche’s personal knowledge mastery (PKM) framework shows how to integrate your own informal learning into your interactions with people in your network

John Stepper’s Working Out Loud is a 12-week program that builds your networking skills (free for individual participants)

Show Your Work by Jane Bozarth (book review)

Alisa Cohn and Dorie Clark (2020): How to network when there are no networking events

See also the slide deck on networking, which was distributed to participants via email.

Cory Doctorow on ‘meaningless’ interactions

Cory Doctorow is a Canadian novelist and digital rights activist. In this excerpt from his 2014 non-fiction book Information doesn’t want to be free, Doctorow comments on the relationship between free speech and the tendency to discount Internet-based discourse as trivial.

“Taken together, these ‘meaningless’ interactions make up nearly the whole of our lives. They are the invisible threads that bind us to our friends and families. When I am away from my family, it’s these moments that I miss. Our social intercourse is built on subtext as much as it is on text—when you ask your wife how she slept last night, you aren’t really interested in her sleep. You’re interested in her knowing that you care about her. When you ask after a friend’s kids, you don’t really care about their potty training progress—you and your friend are reinforcing your bond of mutual care.

If that’s not enough reason to defend the trivial, consider this: the momentous arises only from the trivial. When we rally around a friend with cancer, or celebrate the extraordinary achievements of a friend who does well, or commiserate over the death of a loved one, we do so only because we have an underlying layer of trivial interaction that makes our connection to these people meaningful.”

Back to the program outline

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